sunny winter woods

Today the sun was out and I went for a long walk through the woods near my parents’ house. I took my camera and tried to capture some of the winter beauty. Walking is one of my favorite things to do and I tend to do a lot of thinking whilst walking. The woods are perfect for thinking! Being single again and concentrating entirely on myself, lots of new ideas have popped into my mind that I didn’t consider before. I have new ideas for how I want to live, what I want to do and where I want to go!

Recently I walked a good route with a friend and her dog which I wanted to take again. Today, it all seemed much further and steeper though… I guess I didn’t notice it when chatting with an old friend and throwing pine cones for her dog!

I’ve had to let go of quite a few of my old dreams recently. Most goals and ideas that I was dreaming of were shared with my ex-fiance and have become irrelevant now. As I mentioned above, I have lots of new dreams now that are not shared and are therefore entirely my own… weirdly, they seem so much more exciting than the shared ones did! However, one of the few dreams that were shared but I haven’t let go, is the dream of getting a dog. Walking is just so much more fun with a furry friend! Dogs seem to love their owner unconditionally which certainly appeals after a failed relationship. With a dog, you experience lots of priceless moments that are just hilarious or even shocking, they’re funny companions. Well, I will have to wait a while longer for that dream to come true. I wouldn’t want to get a dog until I’ve sorted my own life out and have the time and space.

Ups, I got sidetracked… back to the woods! The brown leaves covering the woodland floor are a strong contrast to the blue sky. Blue skies are pretty rare here in winter, it tends to be grey and dark… I think the seasons are becoming more blurred and mixed up. Is global warming changing our good old German weather?! It was muddy everywhere and I spotted lots of fungi on trees which must love the damp winter weather.

After seeing various types of moss, we walked over this cute little bridge leading across the local stream here. As a child I used to play in streams like this one, it’s perfect for kids, there are wide pools for dam-building and the water rushes over mossy rocks… I wonder whether it’s popular with the German kids in summer.

I think that when I find a new job, I’ll really feel like I’m starting a new chapter in my life… can’t wait. I can’t wait to move into my own space again, take on some new challenges and meet new people!

I’m also going back to my old art class which I used to do when I lived with my parents years ago. I’ve started a new painting so I’ll be posting more artistic stuff soon :).

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

It is indeed! I’m visiting my parents in Germany at the moment and have been helping them with Christmas preparations and decorations. This is one of my favorite times of the year and it’s been especially beautiful here this year. We’ve been making German Christmas cookies of all shapes and sizes, some worked out great and some didn’t. We have some cookies here that are so hard it’s dangerous to eat them! 🙂

Shown here are some simple stars with white chocolate icing.. yummy.

My mum taught me how to make an advent wreath with four white candles. It was much easier than I expected and lots of fun.

I collected pine cones with my dad in the woods and after our success with the first wreath, we took on the challenge of making a pine cone wreath for our front door. It was so much work and my hands really hurt afterwards but it looks stunning against the dark green door. Let’s hope it keeps a few years.

We also found some pretty holly with lots of red berries which I used to decorate the chimney piece and some furniture. It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

I wish you all a wonderful cosy advent with lots of tea, cookies and fun preparing for Christmas!

London is always a good idea

Hey everyone, once again I’ve been hiding in London.

I visited my sister and godmother in central London which is always amazing… London is always a good idea! The weather was pretty bad (no surprise there) but I enjoyed it anyway and tried to spend as much time as possible inside. Highlights of the trip included visiting a Christmas Fair and looking around the Christmas section at Liberty.

To all October Birthday Girls and Boys

I painted this card for my mum. I thought that the image was very suitable for a lady like her. It oozes timeless glamour and charm. It also includes a flower, a teacup and cake, all things that my mum loves!

Happy Birthday to all October Birthday Girls and Boys!

gift wrapping mini-guide

Gift wrapping is surely one of my favorite things about the holiday season. When others are busy unwrapping their presents and getting excited about the packages’ contents, I’m usually checking out the wrapping and wondering which parts of it to keep for the next season. I even took a small collection of wrapping paper and essentials like glitter with me to Switzerland!

As you can tell, I start looking forward to gift wrapping quite early in the year… so let’s get started with this mini-guide! 

Step 1: Gather up your essentials and any other stuff you might be able to use. You can make your gift wrapping endlessly creative and fancy but today we’re sticking to some simple ideas. I love using kraft paper for wrapping because it’s extremely cheap in comparison to all the super expensive wrapping paper out there and with a few tricks it can work really well.

Step 2: Start by wrapping your gifts in kraft paper. Try to fold visible edges inwards so that the paper looks thicker and then use tape to secure them. Once your gift is wrapped there are two options. Either you now tie a ribbon around it and decorate it more afterwards or you start by decorating it. In this slideshow I tied a ribbon and some jute rope around it first. I like to use jute rope because it feels very rustic and therefore works well with the brown kraft paper. 

Step 3: Now to the really fun part – the decoration. In this example I used gold glitter around the edges of the present and then attached some tags. You can purchase these cute Christmas gnome tags in my shop or make some yourself.

The glitter, ribbons and tags work so well together… this one is finished!

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Here are some more examples. The little instructions explain the basics of how I achieved each look. Especially a mixture of different ideas that all incorporate the same materials, the same paper, ribbons and colors will look great under the tree!

Last but definitely not least, I decided to add a little color – icy blue!

The cold blue ribbon goes especially well with the icy glitter that I dotted around this ‘Merry Christmas’ wrapping. The glitter and blue remind me of ice queens and snowflake fairies….  oh I love that theme –  snowflake fairies! 

I think that will be the theme for my Christmas gift wrapping this year. What colors do you think are big this year? 

Stay tuned for more Christmas ideas later in the season!

 

 

retail therapy results

On Monday I was in need of some retail therapy. For me, the best way to do that is to go to an arty shop and maybe throw in a second hand market or DIY store!

Well, on Monday I got all of that. I visited a shop called terre d’artisans which is a little more in land from Lake Geneva where I live. Terre d’Artisans provides local artisans with a place to sell their work and exchange materials. They have an entire barn full of old furniture that a group of artists are painting and reselling in the shop.

I was in awe of the barn and it’s contents so I couldn’t resist getting this old wooden shutter. Saying that, is it really a window shutter? Or maybe a cupboard door?

I don’t know! I sanded it down and then oiled it and it looks much better already. I’m sure I’ll be using it as a prop for my photos in the future and I might even make something out of it… a side table maybe?!

Unbelievably, this super cute vintage tea cup (real British fine bone china!) with saucer was free. I love the combination of the rustic wood and the delicate china!

leaves and lanterns

When my parents visited me a while ago, they brought me some little autumny decorations that were themselves decorated with these leaves and lanterns.

They have been lying around in my home for a while now and I couldn’t help taking some pictures of them, they’re so pretty and colorful. I’m busy painting so I’ll be posting some new ones soon.

fall and a collection of taps

Good evening! Going for a sunset walk is always great but when it’s fall and the sun shines its golden light onto endless rows of vines, it’s a real treat. This evening I went for a long walk around my Swiss home, the air was so cold it burned my lungs but it was just too beautiful to stay inside.

You can see how low the sun was from my veeeeery long shadow! Haha, I wish my legs were that long.

And here are some of the photos I took for you to see. I love how only the lower leaves of the vines are turning yellow and now and again you see a leaf that’s golden brown.

I’m really getting into the mood for fall at the moment, as you might have noticed! A good friend of mine made some amazing roasted chestnuts for me this morning… incredible. Chestnuts and a cup of tea make for a very cosy combination when it’s pouring with rain outside all morning.

Well, back to my walk. I have realized that the vineyards are full of taps. Most of them are old and rusty and are actually quite interesting. I came across one that looked kind of blue as well as quite a few that were dripping. I hope you’re also enjoying fall, let me know what you think!

Let’s Get Lost

And another collage! This time inspired by traveling. I love linocut printing and I had some old linocut stamps of keys, suitcases and a globe. I also found this piece of beige card stock which just looks so vintage 🙂

Let’s get lost… I often feel like I’ve already gotten lost… how did I end up here in this village doing this? 🙂 Life is so crazy anyway but if I was going to really let everything here go, I suppose I would choose some remote farm in a hot country and live a lonely life surrounded only by animals and wilderness … how cliche for an artist HAHA!

If you could get lost, where would you go?

This original collage is available in my shop.